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8500 woe
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Mac Enthusiast
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: NC, USA
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Oct 3, 2001, 06:30 PM
 
The newspaper on which I volunteer was recently donated a PowerMac 8500/120. This machine would be a great addition to our production force; however, it seems pretty much dead. Here's the story:

I hooked up the computer, hit the power switch, and was greeted with nothing. Well, nearly nothing. The fan whirred to life and the hard drive gave a bit of a groan, but no startup sound nor video! The monitor status LED stayed orange indicating no video feed or the computer is off.

I then proceeded to replace the PRAM battery, press the PRAM reset switch, reseat all the RAM, VRAM, and cards, and try to start up from various CDs and HDs. Does anyone else have an idea? I was especially boggled by the utter lack of startup sound of any kind.

Cheers!
Satellite deployment by:
Ace Moving Co.
     
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Minneapolis, MN
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Oct 3, 2001, 07:14 PM
 
see if the memory and other chips are still in there. If the processor isn't fully seated in its slot you can have the effect you mentioned.

If there is no video ram in the smaller slots, then you'll have a hard time driving a monitor (there should be at least two in the smaller slots under where the powersupply is for the VRAM.

Hopefully its still a functional machine.
     
Mac Elite
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: near Boulder, Colorado
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Oct 3, 2001, 09:10 PM
 
With the stuff you've done so far, you probably have a few scrapes and scratches. My 8500 always draws blood when I access the MoBo. Make sure the speaker is plugged in, try an external.
While doing the following steps, take anti-static precautions: touch the chassis before you remove the power cord and don't move around much. If you have to walk across the room, ground yourself again before touching the MoBo. Might no be a bad idea to get a disposable grounding wrist-strap from Office Max, CompUSA, Radio Shack, etc. (I never do, haven't blown anything up in 25+ years of tech work)
Being in N.C., I expect you have pretty high humidity. If the 8500's been down for a while, all the contacts will have some oxidation. That's a bad thing. Any cards/plugs you can remove, do so. Then take a soft eraser to the card contacts till they shine bright golden(brass). The old "Pink Pearl" is my favorite. After the contacts are shiny, wipe the contacts with a lint-free cloth and ethanol(everclear) and blow dry with compressed air.
Take a toothbrush or similar stiff bristle brush and ethanol and douche out the card receptacles on the MoBo, then blow out with compressed air(you can get cans of the stuff at electronics shops). Don't be chintzy with the ethanol, hold the MoBo at a tilt and let the excess run off the edges into a wastebasket or towel.
After you've given her a good cleaning and re-assembled everything, start-up holding com-opt-p-r keys and if you get sound, hold the keys for 3 sets of chimes.
     
MacmanX  (op)
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: NC, USA
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Oct 3, 2001, 09:44 PM
 
Thanks for the advice, I'll start cleaning tomorrow. As far as the chip layout alluded to in the first reply, all four VRAM slots are full. All four of the RAM slots labeled "A" are full. All four of the "B" RAM slots are empty. The "Cache" slot has as a chip as does the other slot. All are seated fine as is the processor card and the Asante 10/100 BaseT ethernet card (why this machine needs 3 ethernet ports is well beyond me.) Here are some pictures of the Mother Board.





Cheers!
Satellite deployment by:
Ace Moving Co.
     
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Minneapolis, MN
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Oct 4, 2001, 01:53 AM
 
Well your RAM looks OK and the VRAM. I assume you have the Processor card somewhere else. And you tried to take the battery out while unplugged for about 1/2 hr? Just odd unless the processor card or mobo is messed up bad. It just doesn't sound like that should be the problem.


Did I see a 'panic' button on your keyboard?
     
Fresh-Faced Recruit
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: mars
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Oct 9, 2001, 05:47 PM
 
Buy a new battery.
Chunk the old one.
     
Mac Elite
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: near Boulder, Colorado
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Oct 16, 2001, 12:39 AM
 
If you haven't tackled the arduous task of deep-cleaning the motherboard, try a known good processor card from another mac.
The 73/75/7600, 85/8600,95/9600's and most clones all use the same card.
Some clones had processors soldered to the mobo and the cards from 86-9600's running faster than 233 MHz won't work.
     
Junior Member
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Califon, NJ
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Oct 16, 2001, 03:43 PM
 
Try installing the memory in pairs (A1, B1, A2, B2). That's how I've installed them in my 8500.
Peter Leing
17" 1.67GHz PowerBook
450MHz G4 Cube
     
   
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